St Saviours welcomes Sheena to the in-store team!

THE A-TEAM: Nicola (left) and Sheena (right)

Hey Everyone ,
 
Let me introduce myself, my name is Sheena and about 3 weeks ago I happily joined the St Saviours team as Concessions manager. I must say when I got the call that I got the job I was really happy! So happy that I went out and bought a HOT pair of boots- black with gold studs (any excuse, but that’s why they call me Shoena).
 
Now I will admit before applying for the role I had not heard of  the St Saviour brand BUT when I came across the ad for the role I logged on to the website to see the products and I was in Love! I also popped into Topshop to get a feel and try on some of the hats and I was very, very impressed with the quirky, lovely hats. I knew right then I wanted to work for the brand!
 
So as I said earlier I started 3 weeks ago and I am really enjoying the role! I love the buzz and excitement when customers try on the hats, I am also always on hands to give lots of information and offer my styling opinion. You would be surprised how many indecisive customers I meet. It’s all good fun and pleasurable as buying a hat can be stressful especially as we have so many fab-u-lous hats to choose from. I also enjoy playing about with the hat stands so I can show off our gorgeous products at every opportunity.
 
So, just a little bit about me: Prior to this role I worked as a Fashion buyer, I am Shoeaholic (102 the last time I counted), Blogaholic and love chocolate (although I have given it up for lent this year- which I’m finding VERY hard, grrr! )
 
Anyway I think I’ve said enough for now, as this is only meant to be a short introductory post, opps! No doubt I will be on here again so look out for me. 

Just one last thing to say, if you do not already own a St Saviours hat then; hellooooo, what are you waiting for?? 🙂
 
Until next time, Happy hat shopping!
 
Sheena x

The one that never got away…

Forgive me for the obvious nature of this blog, but I felt that this was an appropriate topic to talk about given the month we’re in. The topic for today is… 

Yes, sadly, I feel the need to talk about that little four letter word that makes everyone a touch unstable. I appreciate in advance that the lovely owners of this company will probably block this blog for being cynical when they are all loved up, but I’m going to try! (See Kate’s previous blog if you haven’t – I’m saying nothing!).

As a single man in London, I am witnessing what can only be described as the slow decline of all my coupled up friends into a romantic paranoia. The fear that is seeping in steadily through their partners question of “So what’re we doing for Valentine’s Day?” has taken hold of the majority of them now. One or two people cling to the attitude of playing it by ear, but I know that by the weekend they’ll be on the phone to Moonpig desperately seeking that perfect card.  The poor saps – I don’t envy them at all.

I won’t deny that the idea of a date on Valentine’s Day would be really nice and I certainly won’t lie and say that I want to spend it alone. That simply isn’t true. However, I have, over time, become something of a realist. I know this won’t happen for oh so many reasons, which I won’t go into, but suffice to say I shall be throwing my usual ‘Anti-Valentines’ day bash. Anyway, that’s not even the theme of this blog…

The real reason I wrote this was just to question the whole logic of love and why we’re so obsessed, as a race, with finding Mr or Mrs Right? We manage for a large period of our lives as a single entity, but when we hit 16, we become utterly obsessed with the idea of needing someone to ‘complete us’. However, it can’t just be anybody – that would be too easy. We have to find our soulmate. The One.

They also need to be reasonably good looking, which means the unattractive ones don’t have a shot in hell! Why should it be that features get you further than personality? There is a group of people, and trust me when I say that you know some, who are looking out for you, making you feel good when you’re down and offering themselves up as a should to cry on until someone better comes along. Decent of them eh?

I’m using this blog to make a stand for the decent ones. The ones who never get away. The ones who will be there, listening to all your tales of why men/women are so awful, all the while feeling nothing but love for you. The one’s you’ve cast off as being ‘too good a friend’ to date. Where is the logic in that statement?! The person who knows you the best and cares about you to almost the same degree as your family doesn’t warrant being considered as a potential romantic partner? That, my hat wearing friends, strikes me as a little odd!

I advocate the growth of the ‘romantic friend’ movement. I shall champion this fight and take it to our romance filled streets! Who will join me? It’s easy to start – all you do is have a look around you next time you’re single, and look a little closer to home this time. Perhaps the right person for you is an awful lot closer than you thought. It could be the start of a beautiful new relationship…or not…but hey, why not give it a shot, just to say you tried! Join the RF movement this year and fight for the little guys and girls!

At the end of the day though, love is something that we all seemingly crave, for various reasons. I won’t argue a case against love because I know I would lose. All I will say is, don’t follow the pack. Find it where you want it and enjoy it for all it is!

Have a fantastic Valentine’s Day with someone special, or join me down the pub if you’d rather. I’ll be there all night!

Much love, Simon xx

2012: Blink and you’ll miss it

It’s just turned frrreeezzzzing in London, and it’s about to turn into February too – one month gone already. Yikes!

January has been filled with a mix of exciting opportunities, trivial business stresses and worries, as well as big changes – and major challenges – for our families.

Life really does ebb and flow through good times and bad, but my dad always reminds me that, “In the end, everything will turn out for the best”.  

This one's for my dad

On that note – hope everyone has a Fabulous February!

x

Year of the Social Animal

So we’re just over one week on from New Year’s Day now. How many of you are still keeping those resolutions that you set yourself for 2012? This week and next is the peak time for people to start dropping their resolutions and pretending that they never made them – sneaky eh!

You don't think I'm perfect?

Personally, I’ve made one that I plan on keeping as long as possible. This, in itself, is a rarity as I never make resolutions for reasons that I don’t really remember. I think it was something to do with my bitter, cynical, teenage-self believing that I was too cool to make resolutions. Well, that’s changed at my ancient age of nearly 25. Now it’s time to reassess, grow and improve myself through my singular resolution:

 I must meet at least one new person every week

 

Easy you might cry, but trust me, this is not as easy as you would believe. There are set rules in place, loving created by my friends, to torment me into keeping this resolution for the next year. They are as follows:

  1. I must keep a log of everyone I meet, including name and location of meeting. This is in the form of my diary. Not a journal before you make any presumptions – just a diary for appointments!
  2. This person cannot be someone I have a fleeting conversation with – ie. Shop assistant, bartender, lost tourist on the street etc. It must include at least a five minute conversation and their name. No name equals a failure.
  3. One is the minimum requirement – I should aim for as many as possible. (The original aim was one a day, but we realised that I would either end up making friends with hobos, or going insane, so I adjusted the resolution.)
  4. Christmas Day is an exception!

 So how have I been getting on? Surprisingly well actually. I ran a few attempted trials between the 28th and 1st to assess how much success I would have and the results were good. Since the first, I have met:

1st: Hugo – Bar Manager (who gave us free drinks and knew a friend of mine – success!)

2nd: No one

3rd: Martin, Olva and Laura – Bar Staff (With which I had a 30 minute chat)

4th: No one

5th: No one

6th: Martin – Economics Lecturer

7th: Izzy and Sousan – Friends of a Friend at a dinner party

8th: No one

Not a bad start eh! In eight days, I have met seven people. I like these odds. Whilst a number of them I am unlikely to form a blossoming friendship with, there is every chance that some of them will become regular contacts. This makes the resolution worthwhile for me, being the sociable creature I am, and long may it continue…without sending me too insane.

For now,

Simon

x

Anthropologie: I do

Having recently accepted a marriage proposal (yes, Matt and I are engaged – yippie!) I am in the early stages of developing a worrying obsession with trawling through bridal photos, wedding idea websites and general yay-party-fun-time event themes. Wedding planning has to be one of the most efficient methods of time murder.

Time and time again, my aimless clicking and gawking through strangers wedding photos leads me back to BHLDN, the American wedding-arm of Anthropologie (and also, Urban Outfitters).  BHLDN – pronounced ‘beholden’ – is the shop a bride dreams of… gorgeous, inspiring and generally lovely.

I digress from the point of this story. The point being this: St Saviours have just delivered a very short run of gorgeous pastel grey, 100% wool felt hats with a mint green trim and lining to Anthropologie. The hats are all made in the UK and as usual, each one is hand-finished by us at St Saviours HQ in London.

100% wool felt hat - it's so 2012

 

Here's the inside scoop

 It’s the perfect, easy-to-wear transitional hat to take you into Spring, and is only available in Anthropologie stores in the UK.

Check out the bling… I mean: THE HAT!
 
 
 

Simon says….

Ladies and Gentlemen, do not adjust your computer screen.

There is indeed an intruder in your midst…

Simon - St Saviours' guest blogger

Ok, I’m not officially an intruder. I’m a little bit unexpected, but I am known to Kate and Matt. Honestly!

I should introduce myself properly. I’m Simon – I’ve come on board the good website St Saviours as an alternative blogger. I met Kate and Matt when I was working at Topshop, officially in a Managerial role, looking after them in their fledgling days! Somehow, I befriended them and have ended up in a blogger role recently to help them out and give them the occasional break. I no longer work for Topshop before you begin worrying about double interests etc – I’m now in PR so I’m very removed from the high fashion world which they now inhabit, but hopefully I’ll have some knowledge of what I’m talking about!?

Anyway, I became interested in them through my slightly over-obsession with hats. I’ve had a thing with hats for quite some time. It started with a trilby, then another trilby, a flat cap, a cap, a pork pie hat…the list goes on and on. They now line my wardrobes here in London and back home in Bristol. They were sneaky-they’ve sold me three more hats since I’ve met them. I think I’m now their most regular customer. No wonder they made me a blogger eh!

I will happily admit that I’m horribly jealous of these lovely people at the moment. Not only are they managing a fantastic business full of beautiful hats, they also get to rock out at all the coolest events and festivals around the country. I don’t know anyone else who gets to do that – I’m clearly in the wrong trade!

I’ll leave it here for now – I’m using this entry as more of an introduction. You will see me here again before long, assuming Kate and Matt allow me near a keyboard again! Here’s hoping eh.

For now…

Simon

x

The Secret Emporium Pop-Up Christmas Market

It’s got to be the world’s worst kept secret – but why keep something so fabulous a secret?! WHY?

Roll up, Roll up - it's THE Christmas market for 2011

We’ve been blathering on about this One-Day-Spectacular for a while now, but as it’s almost upon us, we’ll contiue the spiel… The clever clogs who curate and create the award-winning Secret Garden Party festival are behind what is surely going to be a wondrous Christmas Market. It’s for one day only – Sunday 18th December – and is not just for shopping, but also eating, enjoying, participating and being festively mulled (with wine).

St Saviours will be there – and we know lots of the other designers and makers also taking part (….having spent lots of hat-income on their wonderful wares over the last year or so). They are all fab, and we KNOW it’s going to be the perfect place to pick up a unique but ultra cool range of Christmas presents (for yourself, or others if you’re feeling generous).

So, if you’re in London, and looking for something lovely to do on the last Sunday before Christmas – pop over to this pop up market in East London’s Holywell Lane. It will be open from 11am till 10pm, so swing by any time… there is a good map and pictorial guide to finding the venue on the Secret Emporium website.

We hope to see you there! xx

For a skint(ed), not minted, Christmas

Life has become p-r-e-t-t-y hectic at St Saviours towers. One of the effects of the uneven hat/life balance is that  I’m reading the weekend papers weeks after purchasing them (and sorry to the EuroZone crisis-mongers… I have to forgo the actual news and head straight to the “research” part. AKA the glossy, fashion trash mags).  

Anyway, I’ve been flicking through some of the November magazines and am pleased to see lots of hats suggested as Christmas presents. Even better, every single one is more expensive, and in my biased opinion – much less lovely – than the St Saviours range.

For example, this hat from St Saviours is NOT £220… like the one under it.

This St Saviours hat is under £100

 

Not a St Saviours hat

 
Although I totally love, LOVE these hats, as seen here on Gucci catwalk models, not many of us – and this is not just according to the media – can afford them. As an alternative, the St Saviours fedoras are just as gorgeous. Hand blocked in the UK using soft wool felt, then trimmed and individually lined by us – they cost a fraction of the price of the big-name versions…
 

Gorgeous Gucci

 

St Saviours hot pink fedora with Italian weave trim

 

St Saviours mulberry fedora with sky blue trim

 

St Saviours maroon fedora with violet trim

 
And wrapping? NO PROBLEM!!! We’ve now got hat boxes. Lovely.
 

The simple way to wrap a hat

 
 
Off topic, I very much liked this ‘Snapshot’ of a random man clearing up horse poo, under the watchful eye of a passing… horse. Neigh. 
 

'Yeah, take that, human'

 

Sailing from the Isle of Wight to Regent Street and popping up at Oxford Circus
It feels like a million things have happened since I last wrote.

Our new-look lounge/ warehouse

The biggest thing has to be launching the St Saviours pop-up concession in Topshop, Oxford Circus London – which is SO exciting! We are approaching the end of our second week now, and so far, the response has been great. We are bringing new hats in on an almost daily basis, so the 30,000 shoppers per day should see something new every time they come in… this busy production means we can’t get into the shop as much as we like – and as our little stall gets really messy really quickly – we decided to employ some lovely girls to keep it looking ship-shape during the week. (This is also partly because I have taken to scowling at customers who don’t put the hats back on the stall exactly as I like them, and Matt thinks this may put them off.)

Our little stand in Topshop Oxford Circus

And these are the hot chicks (or are they mannequins?) we spotted wearing our hats in store.

Strike a pose

Just before we started in Topshop, we sent a small run of very limited edition hats to Anthropologie, Regent Street. Anthropologie is an American brand, owned by Urban Outfitters (it’s like the older, more sophisticated sister). They sell such gorgeous stuff, and we were so chuffed to be invited to supply them with some St Saviours hats. We are planning to work more with Anthropologie over Christmas and summer next year on some exclusive designs, which we can’t wait to get working on.

Limited edition hat available in Anthropologie now!

So other than these two mega-events, we also traded over four-days in the Secret Emporium tent at Bestival. Err, that’s windy, cold, LOUD (and very young) Bestival on the Isle of Wight. We were in a bit of a daze when we arrived, as we’d just got off the plane after a week in New York. We went to NYC for a family wedding, which was just amazing – we had such a great time, and used the trip to pick up loads of lovely trimmings for our hats.

We are back at Sunday Upmarket on Brick Lane this weekend, and we hear Spitalfields Markets are opening on Saturdays in November, so we’re going to give this a whirl too. If you’re in town, come by and say hi. Or, of course, drop us an email if there’s anything you want made specially for you.

The kids are(n’t) alright

This week – the disaffected youth of UK have stepped over the line of acceptability (we thought the low hanging trousers were bad) and started going… well, mental.

Hanging tough?

It’s pretty embarrassing for the majority of England’s population who are disgusted that this is actually happening (how? why?)… good on everyone who’s helped clean up, said “thank you” to a police officer and contributed to making things right.

On the upside, I’ve found I’ve started doing more public service-type things because of the overwhelming anti-social happenings around town. For instance, this morning I noted down the number of a tube carriage which had a broken door and reported it to the station staff. Why is this?

Meanwhile, life goes on. Here’s the latest news from St Saviours:

1)      An ultra cool new shop that opened at the end of July in Tokyo is stocking our hats – amazing! JOHN is a fab little café, fashion and ‘miscellaneous goods’ shop that also doubles as a pop-up space. If you can read Japanese, check out the JOHN blog to find out more (hopefully it says something nice about St Saviours!). Or, if you’re popping over to Tokyo, be sure to drop in and meet Dan.

I AM JOHN

2)      The cool couple who run the gorgeous Lily boutique in Belgium are opening their second store, Mr + Mrs Tweed, in September. There will be a few St Saviours hats in store – which is exciting! If you’re visiting Mechelen, visit the two shops for life’s little luxuries, and everyday classics.

It's about everyday classics!

3)      To help meet growing demand for our hats, we met with the lovely Gill at a UK family-run hat manufacturer who we hope to work with on our upcoming  collections. These will be gorgeous, totally UK made, wool felt hats in amazing colours – blocked to our specification. Delicious.

4)      We are looking forward to welcoming a bona fide FAMOUS person into our “showroom” (see next point) and make him a hat for an upcoming TV  appearance. Clearly this is making us giddy with childish excitement.

Pack up!

5)      Our second bedroom has been redeployed to act as a studio / workshop / office / showroom. At the moment it’s just chaos. But at least I can close the door on it.

Disorganised Chaos

Well, that’s it for now. This afternoon we’re off to sell our wares at the Wilderness Festival, which I’ve just discovered has a spa on site. A spa at a festival? Perhaps they’re being ironic, and it’s actually a ‘mud spa’ (yes, it’s summer so rain is forecast).